An Account of the First Voyages and Discoveries Made by the Spaniards in America by Bartolome de las Casas, published in 1699.
Octavo, [vi], 248pp, 40pp. Marbled boards, modern calf spine with raised bands, title in gilt. At rear is a 40pp section titled The Art of Travelling to Advantage. This copy includes one illustrated plate (divided into 2) by de Bry, depicting 16 scenes of “The Cruelties used by the Spaniards on the Indians.” Lacking the other double page plate which depicts 6 additional scenes of Indian Cruelties. (Sabin 11289) (Church 780) (Field 881) A scarce copy with the folding plates usually lacking.
Bartolome de las Casas was the first priest ordained in the New World and became famous for his depictions of Spanish atrocities. Friede and Keen called him “the new World’s first political activist.” This work by Casas was first published in Spain in 1539, but was censored and forbidden until 1552. The first English edition of this work was published in 1656 under the title The Tears of the Indians, where they noted the number of Indian deaths at 20 Million. By this printing the number had doubled to 40 Million.